Maternal and child health nurse sector highlights

Download this snapshot to view the results of 130 respondents who selected ‘maternal and child health nurse’ as their profession from 1,518 health, social and community services workers who took the 2020-21 National Workforce Survey.


  • Maternal and child health nurses exposed to Emerging Minds reported higher capability in all subscales when compared to maternal and child health nurses not exposed to Emerging Minds. Highest scores were reported for infant mental health capability which is notably higher than the general workforce.
  • Other highly rated capabilities were for skills in child mental health capability and facilitating support. And while maternal and child health nurses demonstrated high levels of understanding childhood trauma, they scored their capability to respond to children who have experienced trauma lower, on average, than the general workforce.
  • Maternal and child health nurses were also more likely to have engaged with Emerging Minds learning activities than the average worker.
  • Maternal and child health nurses working in more disadvantaged areas and those working in regional and rural areas may need some support to build their capacity in child mental health. Rural maternal and child health nurses especially report lower levels of workplace support for practice which promotes child mental health.
  • Survey results indicate the maternal and child health nurse workforce could strengthen their support for children by incorporating child mental health in their interactions with families more often.

Subscribe to our newsletters